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Interview with Vorna | «Every now and then, it needs to rain so that we can start a new»



Hello Vorna!

What does Vorna mean and how the collaboration between you started?

Mikael: Hello! Vorna is a character from Finnish folklore, he was a great warrior, sort of an antihero who fought anyone that dared to cross him. Our collaboration started way back in 2008 when our vocalist Vesa and our guitarists Arttu and Henri met on one drunken night. They quickly recruited Niilo to play bass and in the spring of 2009 they found Saku and myself and the lineup has been the same ever since.



Was your music style the same from the beginning? How and why did it change over the years?

Mikael: In the beginning we were more into black and folk metal so our composing reflected that as well with higher tempos, folky melodies and blast beats with harsh vocals. Over the years our compositions became more melodic overall and with the addition of clean vocals and more abstract synth sounds we have found our current sound. Melancholy has always been one of the key elements in our music and has persisted through the years.



What is your main inspiration?

Mikael: Musically for me inspiration can come from literally anywhere, although it helps that we live in a country thats dark or pitch black 80% of the year. Usually life gives you something to work with.




What process are you following when it comes in writing a song?

Mikael: Usually someone has already made some sort of demo track and we collectively decide if its good enough to start working on together. Then , when we start working together, the song might completely change its form. The main  composer of the song has the final say but for us, writing a song is a collective project where everyone can contribute.



In your opinion what makes Vorna stand out, since you are in a country that this music style is so common?

Mikael: I think one of the major factors is that we sing in Finnish. Which is kind of weird considering its our native language but surprisingly, many Finnish metal bands sing in English. Also the way we approach our music and live gigs might appeal to a lot of people as we try to be as genuine as possible, especially live.





Do you think that you have a limited audience since all the lyrics are in Finnish? Have you ever considered to release an album with English lyrics? Do you believe that it is easier to write and compose music with English lyrics?

Mikael: It might have some effect, but we have received a lot of positive feedback from abroad as well. We actually did some songs in English in the very beginning but decided to continue with Finnish as we felt we can do more with Finnish language as a storytelling medium. Nowadays we translate our lyrics in English as well, trying our best to keep the original poetic approach so that our international listeners can know what Vesa is shouting about.



What is the message that Vorna want to pass through their music?

Mikael: Even though the lyrics themselves might tell sad or depressing stories, there is always a glimmer of hope, no matter how distant or dim it might be.



Your third album “Sateet palata saavat” was released recently. What is the main theme of the album?

Henri: I don’t think the album is a theme album per se, more like a collection of individual stories. However, the album title means “The Rains Shall Return” – the deeper meaning behind that is that the ‘rains’ symbolize struggles we all have to face in our lives and that those struggles are also a necessary part of one’s life. Every song on the album deals with these issues in their own way. To summarize: every now and then, it needs to rain so that we can start a new.


Which are the differences between those three albums?

Henri: Lyrically, the first album mostly dealt with mythologies and folklore. Back then we still belonged to the “pagan metal” niche. The second album started going to the direction we’re at right now: the songs reflect on the inner strife we go through as humans. All in all, I’d say our material is a lot more personal these days.
Musically, I think our song-writing has slowly progressed throughout the years. The songs are more compact and simply just a lot better than in the beginning. They actually have choruses (!) in them and are stripped of everything redundant.




There are a lot of music elements of different styles in your latest album. Do you like experimenting with your music or you are following a certain pattern?

Henri: We have been more open towards experimenting with our music and fusing many kinds of styles together, whereas back in the day our songs were more easily distinguishable as belonging to a certain genre. But, I wouldn’t say we’re experimenting on purpose or following some sort of set pattern. We have three main composers in the band and, in addition, our keyboardist Saku gets his inspiration from outside metal music; so, all that combined, the end results are prone to sound rather experimental. However, as always, we do what feels good to us at each point in time. There’s no telling what the next album is going to sound like at this point.



Why did you feel that you needed a break for writing “Sateet palata saavat”?

Henri: It felt like a natural choice. We had been playing a lot of gigs after “Ei valo minua seuraa” came out and hadn’t really had the time to focus on new material in between. I guess we’re the type of people who need to take time for ourselves to get immersed in producing new material. It’s hard to find the will and energy to do that if you have to constantly focus on shows and band rehearsals.





Besides what we can tell from your lyrics and music, can you tell us your view of the world?

Henri: Vorna has as many views of the world as there are members in the band. It’s hard to speak for everyone, but I think in general we’re a rather forward-thinking bunch of introverted people who enjoy the silence and roaming in the woods.



What are your immediate plans?

Henri: Our immediate plans are to finish the on-going Finnish record release tour. From there on out, we’ll see what happens. Hoping to spread the melancholy outside Finnish borders as well!

Thanks for the interview!



Chris Mouskos, Eleni Ktisti


Black Velvet Radio

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